The Emirates Racing Authority is pleased to announce a number of changes to the Pattern calendar with seven races upgraded in group status and three others becoming Listed.

The Al Quoz Sprint is one of nine races within the Dubai International Racing Carnival programme held at Meydan Racecourse to be upgraded and one of four to Group 2 level alongside the Al Rashidiya and the two races for fillies and mares, the Cape Verdi and the Balanchine.

The UAE Oaks and DRC Gold Cup have risen to Group 3 level while the Meydan Classic, Firebreak Stakes and Nad Al Sheba Trophy will be run at Listed level for the first time.

The Al Quoz Sprint was moved to the Dubai World Cup programme for the first time in 2010 but with the established Group 1, the Dubai Golden Shaheen, also on the card over 1,200m, the Dubai Racing Club decided to amend the distance of the Al Quoz Sprint to 1,000m.

The Abu Dhabi Championship, a thoroughbred turf race run over 2,200m at Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club has risen from Listed to Group 3.

ERA Board member Mr Malih Lahej Al Basti said: “The quality of horses racing in the UAE, both locally-based and international, has substantially grown over the years and we are pleased the racing fixtures now reflect that calibre of competition.

The Carnival races continue to grow in strength and this has been mirrored at other racecourses and it is pleasing to see the elevation of the Abu Dhabi Championship at Abu Dhabi.”

Dubai Racing Club Chief Executive Officer Frank Gabriel Jr concluded: “The Al Quoz Sprint’s rise to Group 2 is pleasing as are the promotions of a number of our other races, adding further merit to the quality of horses coming to Dubai in the early part of the year.”
Promoted Races in the UAE

January 20 US$200,000 Cape Verdi 1,600m Turf Promoted to Group 2
January 27 US$200,000 Al Rashidiya 1,800m Turf Promoted to Group 2
February 10 US$175,000 Firebreak Stakes 1,600m AW Promoted to Listed
February 17 US$175,000 Nad Al Sheba Trophy 2,800m Turf Promoted to Listed
February 18 US$200,000 Balanchine 1,800m Turf Promoted to Group 2
February 24 US$250,000 UAE Oaks 1,900m AW Promoted to Group 3
February 24 US$150,000 Meydan Classic 1,600m Turf Promoted to Listed
March 10 US$200,000 DRC Gold Cup 3,200m Turf Promoted to Group 3
March 26 US$1,000,000 Al Quoz Sprint 1,000m Turf Promoted to Group 2
March 20 AED368,000 Abu Dhabi Championship 2,200m Turf Promoted to Group 3